tv The Ed Show MSNBC January 9, 2013 8:00pm-9:00pm PST
>> yes, there is this fetish, news about whether he auto-penned the tax cuts, tax hikes in the last round, whenever you want to call it. i think we're stuck in that retro age, it is embarrassing, the signature thing, but beyond the weirdness of washington, and collection of 8 and 10-year-olds, does it matter? >> no, my signature was beautiful. are you kidding me? the nuns had me doing this beautiful thing that i can no longer do. i completely lost connectioning to it. but there is trouble, talk of him in the -- >> his signature is the most interesting thing, maybe the most controversial. >> he is super competent. >> incredibly competent. >> and like all numbers, wicked boring. >> and if you're john mccain i am sure there is something you could find about him, maybe that he works for a guy called barack obama. that would be enough.
the fact that he negotiated a good evening, americans, and welcome to "the ed show" from new york. conservatives compare president obama to hitler over the gun issue? this is "the ed show." let's get to work. >> the president and i are determined to take action. this is not an exercise in photo opportunities. >> joe biden says the president is serious about guns. >> you cannot tell me that a kid sitting in the basement for hours playing call of duty and killing people over and over and over again does not desensitize that child to the real life effects of violence. >> and republicans blame video games. the time for excuses is over. katrina vanden hubbell of the nation on what it takes to keep the debate from going in circles. armed in the classroom.
we're talking to a teacher tonight about why she wants to carry a weapon in school. and the war on women is back. cecile richards and the attack on planned parenthood. drone strikes. they are killing terrorists, but the innocent numbers of civilians are growing. so are we creating more enemies than we stopped? ryans priebus is touting the 2012. was he there? and this is still the face of our intelligence committee? >> it appear there's has been deep penetration in the halls of our united states government by the muslim brotherhood. >> when will enough be enough? good to have you with us tonight, folks. thanks for watching. the wheels are in motion for serious solutions to gun violence and the problem in this country. vice president joe biden continues his due diligence. he was joined today by attorney general eric holder and representatives of 12 gun safety groups. they also spoke with survivors of gun massacres like virginia
tech and aurora, colorado. their mission is to find a path forward. >> and as the president said, if our actions result in only saving one life, they're worth taking. but i'm convinced we can -- we can effect the well-being of millions of americans and take thousands of people out of harm's way. we are not going to get caught up in the notion unless we can do everything we're going to do nothing. it's critically important we act. >> the vice president is being very clear. common sense gun laws will not be ignored. tomorrow vice president biden will meet with gun advocacy groups, including the national rifle association. no doubt they will ask the vice president about something he said earlier today. >> the president is going to act. there are executive orders, executive action that can be taken. we haven't decided what that is yet. but we're compiling it all with help of the attorney general and all the rest of the cabinet members, as well as legislative
action we believe is required. >> the vice president said there is no decision yet on any type of action when it comes to the executive action, but the idea of the white house acting like that on its own has the right wing, of course, freaking out. the drudge report, well, sheer some journalism for you. they put it up this way there you see it. president obama is like hitler and stalin. far right wing members of congress are already getting ready for a fight. congressman jeff duncan of south carolina said in a statement "we live in a republic, not a dictatorship." guests on fox news were in hysterics. >> if he does executives, he is becoming more like hugo chavez all the time. it will be your papers, please, like nazi germany. >> of course, it shouldn't be surprising to see all the right wing hair on fire. before president obama was reelected, the gun lobby told conservatives what to expect in a second term. >> all that first term lip service to gunowners is just part of a massive obama conspiracy to deceive voters and hide his true intentions to
destroy the second amendment during his second term. >> according to the national rifle association, any attempt to achieve common sense gun legislation is a conspiracy to take away all guns. unfortunately, should i say fortunately, the common sense side of the debate is not backing around this time around. senate majority leader harry reid is on the move. he has a history of gun rights advocacy. but a close adviser to the senator said this about harry reid, he is in a different place than he was in 2010. reid is in a position to make a true difference when it comes to passing new gun laws in this country. new york governor andrew cuomo wants his state to make an impact. >> and in one word, it's just enough. it has been enough. >> cuomo's seven-point man to address gun violence is the most comprehensive yet. it could serve as a blueprint for the rest of the country. cuomo wants new york to have the toughest assault weapons ban in
the nation. he wants to close the loophole in private sales at gun shows and on the internet. cuomo was calling for a ban on high capacity magazines and tougher penalties for illegal gun use. he wants restrictions on gun ownership by the mentally ill, as well as ban on internet sales of ammunition and a state check of all ammunition purchases. cuomo understands you cannot solve a problem unless you address the root cause. now, across the river, another governor has a much different opinion. >> you agree there should be some new legislation on weapons? >> a complete package of all that is being dealt with at once. deal with the weapons that you think you need to deal with. but if you don't deal with mental health issues, you don't deal with substance abuse issues, and you don't deal with violence in the video games in the media, if you don't deal with all of it, you're not going to eliminate the problem, or even reduce the problem, in my view. >> chris christie was rightly
praised for his leadership in the aftermath of hurricane sandy. no doubt about it, he stood up to his party for their actions and how they didn't do what they were supposed to do early on to get relief from congress. but now is the time for real leadership, passing the buck on to the entertainment industry, governor, is nothing but a cop-out. it's a great way to divert attention from a politically delicate situation and difficult position. >> i don't let games like call of duty in my house for ps3 and xbox. that's a decision mary pat and i have made. you cannot tell me sitting in the basement for hours playing call of duty and killing people over and over and over again does not desensitize that child to the real life effects of violence. >> i don't disagree with governor christy. parenting, it's a responsibility. parents have to parent. but there is no legislation to keep a kid from playing video games in this country. christie wants to, if he wants to be in the big leagues when it comes to politics, this is the issue. he should look to his counterpart across the river in
new york as an example. >> forget the extremists. it's simple. no one hunts with an assault rifle. no one needs ten bullets to kill a deer. and too many innocent people have died already. end the madness now. pass safe gun control in the state of new york. >> some governors just can't say it. this is a leadership moment for all people in elected office in this country. we are at a crossroads. which way do we turn? it's no time to change the conversation and start picking on the first amendment and say, well, it's the entertainment industry. the entertainment industry has been around for a long, long time. governor christie, it's the guns. get your cell phones out. i want to know what you think. tonight's question, will the nra and republicans block responsible gun legislation? text a for yes.
text b for no to 622639. you can always go to our blog at ed.msnbc.com. we'll bring results later on. joining me tonight is katrina van den hubbell. the conversation is elevating on all levels. with the hysteria coming from the right wing, is it going to make it tougher to get more reasonable gun legislation in this country? >> yeah, but i think you're right, ed. i think we're at a crossroads. it's a singular moment for to end gun violence there is a poll out today showing the nra at its lowest opinion point in years, largely because of wayne lapierre's speech written by satirist jonathan swift. gabby giffords and her husband have founded a pac called americans for responsible solutions. it will be a lift to count whatever they call -- think of gabby giffords. she calls the nra an ideological fringe whose big money and lobbying influence has cowed too many in washington. but we see the example of governor cuomo.
and if i could just add about governor christie, for too long, ed, after mass shootings in this country, people have blamed it on mental health. i think vice president biden is being very wise in trying to craft an anti-gun violence program, which will include mental health, which will take on the popular culture. but other countries have violent popular culture. other countries have mental health problems. they don't have our gun homicide rates. >> the very mental health that the republicans didn't want to support and never have wanted to support. >> they cut the funding. >> okay. and of course they always use the entertainment industry. but i want to go become to the website of drudge. comparing the president of the united states to hitler and stalin, i mean, how low will they go? and you know what kind of people that whips up into a frenzy. >> but think of it, ed. first of all, the nra doesn't represent the 100 million
responsible gun owners in this country. the nra is the extremist in the room. when you start doing hitler and stalin, i think responsible common sense americans turn off. this is too extreme. this will appeal to the extremists in this country, but we want to speak to those who understand the need for common-sense legislation. the president and vice president biden are trying to put together a common sense package that police chiefs in this country, that mayors, that others who have to deal day to day with these illegal guns want to see. if the president and vice president have a congress that will not move on this, and it may well not, executive action is not out of order. it is not out of order. >> i really praise the vice president for saying that today, because that tells the anti-s over there, look, we're serious about this. we're going to do something about it. what kind of executive action could he take? how far could the president go on this? and of course he's got the mayor's organization behind him. he would get a lot of support around the country. >> he would. >> what would be a good thing? >> well, at the outer limit, i would say there is the ban on the assault weapons there is the
ban on the high capacity magazine guns, which pump 30 to 60 bullets into a kid in one minute. you could also have data checks. you could have mental health checks. you could have prosecution for illegal gun trafficking. but i would recommend to your viewers to go to the website of the mayors against illegal guns. they put forward a very responsible plan in 2009 after they saw the obstruction in terms of some common sense gun legislation. this is supported, ed, by millions of people in this country. and to call it something as drudge does is to buy into the extremism that they want to pilfer and spread. >> but there are a lot of lawmakers that simply will not move on their position. and we have seen some of them come out recently. and, of course, the national rifle association gives them somewhat protection when it comes to funding and also a public image. but this organization, the nra, has taken a hit in the public eye. only 42% favorable rating compared to 45%. >> that's right. >> so where are the lawmakers?
high can't the lawmakers take a look at this and say we're going to do something this time. we're going to side with the president. >> i think you're seeing some movement. harry reid is an interesting example. harry reid after aurora, the shootings in colorado, didn't want to open a debate on responsible gun legislation. he is now prepared to. senator manchin of west virginia, senator warner of virginia. >> would the assault weapons ban pass? the 1994 assault weapons ban passed. i asked that to barbara boxer here last night, senator from california. she doesn't know. that's a big statement. >> we know what some of the solutions are. listen, you've got to begin somewhere, as the vice president said. we're not going to end gun violence in this country. but until we begin, there is going to be -- i don't know, ed, but if it does, and it shows the lack of courage on the part of our political class. however, you do see in governor cuomo and the possibilities around this country of governs of various states taking measures in their own hands. and i do think the president,
because after the gabby giffords shooting, the department of justice put together a package of executive actions. there will be action. speed is of the essence. >> katrina vanden heuvel, thanks for joining us tonight. thank you so much. remember to answer tonight' questions. we want to know what you think. coming up, teachers and guns. we'll talk to an educator who wants to protect her students with a concealed weapon in school. find out if she is worried what parents might think. stay with us. we're right back. [ male announcer ] house rule number 14. a great cup of coffee should be easy as one, two... well, just one. new single serve cafe collections from maxwell house now available for use in the keurig k-cup brewer. always good to the last drop.
the newtown school shooting has sparked a nationwide debate over whether teachers should carry concealed weapons in schools. a new poll shows most americans think arming teachers is the wrong answer. only 27% want teachers to carry firearms. 64% oppose it. but it's easy to understand why parents would not want a gun in their child's classroom. in 2010, guns killed seven children and young adults every single day in america. that's an average of seven people between the ages of 1 and
24 getting shot and killed every day in america. guns killed more kids than cancer, heart disease, flu, or infection in 2010. but gun advocates claim they're teaching safety. they say a gun can buy a teacher some valuable time in an emergency. the biggest teachers union totally disagree. the atf and the nae say guns have no place in our schools, period. we've heard from the unions, and we've seen the opinion polls. the question is what do teachers really think? i'll talk to one teacher who wants to protect her students by carrying a gun in the classroom. stay tuned. welcome back to "the ed show." and a fractured beak. surgery was successful, but he will be in a cast until it is fully healed, possibly several months. so, if the duck isn't able to work, how will he pay for his living expenses? aflac. like his rent and car payments? aflac.
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welcome back to "the ed show." thanks for stay with us tonight. there is no doubt the newtown shooting started an emotional debate over guns and school security in our country. it's fair to say the murder of 20 first graders and seven adults struck fear into the hearts of parents across this country. some of the parents, including president obama, called for tougher gun restrictions. the nra proposed a different solution, arm teachers, more security at schools. gun clubs claim hundreds of teachers are applying for free weapons training. 200 people showed up for this class outside salt lake city, utah. not all of the people who took the course are teachers, but some are. one of them is with us tonight. i'm joined this evening by carolyn kane, a grade school teacher in utah county, utah,
who teaches special education in kindergarten to the sixth grade. carolyn, great to have you with us tonight. the newtown shooting, did it have a profound effect on you to bring you to this conclusion? >> absolutely. getting a concealed/carry permit is something i thought about for quite a while. but when i was watching the news and listening to the teacher stories, i couldn't help but put myself in their shoes. and wonder what would i do? you know, and just start to think about what would i do in that situation. and i wanted options. >> why do you want to carry a gun in the classroom? why do you want to be armed? can you hear me? or did the audio drop out? carolyn -- the audio is gone. we're having an audio problem here, and we hope to correct it. carolyn cain, a grade school teacher in utah county, utah,
with us from utah tonight. she has stepped forward and said that she wants to carry a firearm in the classroom after what unfolded in the newtown school shooting in connecticut just under 30 days ago. and we will try to come back to that interview later on in the program. or do we stay with it? we will be back with more on "the ed show" right after this. with the spark cash card from capital one,
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welcome back to "the ed show." we have sorted out our audio problem now. i'm rejoined by carolyn cain, a grade school teacher in utah county, utah, who teaches special education children in kindergarten to sixth grade. she explained to us just a minute ago what impact the newtown shooting had on her. as we go back to you, carolyn, i want to know why do you want to carry a gun in the classroom? >> well i think -- it's not so much i want to carry a gun. i want to have options. for that situation. i think the world is changing. it's not safe. and we see these kinds of situations happen over and over. and i -- when i first heard, i thought wow, i wish i could have a gun because i didn't know i could. and after i heard about the training and the course, and i learned that i could. and i thought you know what? this is something that i want to learn about, and i want to be
able to do if i have to. >> and the state of utah will allow you to get a conceal and carry and carry a gun into the school. how are you going to carry it? how are you going to store it. >> absolutely. >> and are you worried that it might be accessible to some rambunctious kids? >> well, those are still questions. like i said, i just found out. i'm a researcher. i'm not going to run, grab the first holster and gun i see and go to class. i want to feel comfortable that i'm not putting my students at more danger by carrying a gun myself. but the more i'm learning, i think there are some safe options. and like i've said, you know. >> what do you think parents think? what kind of parental reaction are you going to get? >> well, i'm -- i'm a parent myself. and just putting myself in
parents shoes and listening to the news report, boy, i wish those teachers had a gun. >> but what about the other parents? they may not see it the way you see it? do you think they'll feel comfortable knowing that the teacher has a firearm in the classroom? >> i think that the parents that know me know that i love their children and i wouldn't put them at risk in any way. >> so you don't think a firearm in the classroom would put anyone at risk, that it would be a much safer environment? >> i -- i absolutely -- i wouldn't consider carrying one if i didn't feel like i could do it safely. >> but what if you had a parent who objected to it? what position would that put you in? >> well, in the state of utah, a parent doesn't have to know about it. teachers can carry a firearm and nobody ever -- they've been doing it for 12 years. i've found out more and more about teachers that do. and employee -- >> the teachers have had guns in schools for 12 years in utah?
>> yes, yes. it's been legal to do that for 12 years. >> and parents haven't known about it? >> right. you don't have to tell if you're a concealed weapon holder. >> do you think parents have a right to know? for instance, if my child was in your classroom, do you think that i would have a right to know that there is a firearm in that classroom? >> well, if -- if -- i personally would feel okay with any of the teachers, teachers i know, any teach they're i've ever met. they have the -- >> but i'm talking about the parents. >> right, right. >> i want to focus. the parents are dropping their little kids off to a school, and they don't know that there is a firearm in the classroom. do you think they have a right
to know? >> not necessarily. not necessarily. >> why? >> well, because i think that firearms -- what we do know is that the bad guys come in to schools. what we don't know -- i mean, we're making lots of guesses about what could happen if. and those things haven't happened. like i said, we've been able to carry them for 12 years here in utah, and i haven't -- i have not heard them, and they would be on the news if those things happened. so i think causing more -- it's the same reason i would prefer not to have big armed militia next to the door for the kids to see. >> but it's a parental right issue here as well. i can't believe that every parent, you know, in utah or any state would say, yeah, i think it's okay to have a firearm in the classroom and me not know about it. >> okay, well, then you could say this. if -- if they watch the news, if they are interested in the law,
they know that it's possible that a teacher might be carrying a firearm. and so they would know that it's possible that could be happening at their school. and then that's a choice that they make. >> don't you worry about that you're going to be outgunned with someone with an assault weapon? what is to stop you from bringing in an assault weapon in? >> you know what? me bringing it in for protection? >> exactly. >> well, it's a -- >> go ahead. >> it's a concealed permit. so i have to conceal it. i'm not going to be able to conceal an assault weapon. >> do you think it would be a good thing if there was an assault weapons ban and criminals couldn't get them? >> no. well, because an assault weapons ban doesn't mean the criminals couldn't get them. >> the polls show that only 27% of the people think that teachers should be armed. that's a rather low number. do you get a sense from your community that that number doesn't mean anything, that people are going to go along
with this? >> in my community, yes. and that is one of the reasons i don't think it should be a federal issue. that's why i think it should be up to local governments and state governments to decide. >> and what about carrying a gun? what kind of a message does that send to your students? >> well, it won't send any message because they won't know about it. like i said, i don't want -- i don't want -- in my classroom, i think it is -- the most importance that my students feel safe when they're in there, because that's the only way they're going to learn. they can't learn when they're preoccupied with other things. i would rather them not see big guns when they're walking into school. >> do you think your fifth and sixth graders will feel safer if they know you have a firearm? they could make that judgment? >> you know what? i wouldn't give them the choice.
i wouldn't feel -- and in my community, i think they feel fairly safe anyway. >> okay. carolyn cain, i appreciate you joining us on "the ed show" tonight. thank you for your opinions and your insight on this. appreciate it. what did the gop learn from the latest election? it turns out not much. house republicans are trying to defund planned parenthood again. we'll talk with the president of planned parenthood cecile richards about that and much more. and later, the obama administration shows no signs of dropping its drone program. is it good policy? i'll talk with robert greene wald. stay tuned. you're watching "the ed show" on msnbc. aig? we said we were g to turn it around, and we did. woman: we're helping joplin, missouri, come back from a devastating tornado. man: and now we're helping the east coast recover from hurricane sandy. we're a leading global insurance company, based right here in america. we've repaid every dollar america lent us. everything, plus a profit of more than $22 billion. for the american people.
nothing. are you stealing our daughter's school supplies and taking them to work? no, i was just looking for my stapler and my... this thing. i save money by using fedex ground and buy my own supplies. that's a great idea. i'm going to go... we got clients in today. [ male announcer ] save on ground shipping at fedex office. welcome back to "the ed show." last year we saw the gop wage an all-out war on women's health care in this country. and it looks like the republican party has no intention of letting up. congresswoman marsha blackburn of tennessee says she wanted to
start the new year off right, by proposing to cut federal funding for planned parenthood. blackburn reintroduced legislation originally championed by former congressman mike pence. his bill went nowhere, but that wasn't stopping blackburn. the measure would prevent the department of health and human services from allocating funds for family planning assistance. blackburn explained her mission to mike huckabee earlier this week. >> it is the right type of fight to have on so many different levels. we know that planned parenthood is basically big abortion business. >> really? of course, if you are a person who likes to deal in facts, you know that only 3% of planned parenthood's services are abortion services, and no, i say no federal money is used. as for the other 97%, those services include cancer screenings, std screenings, contraceptive services. and one in five women will visit planned parenthood at least once in her lifetime. blackburn's bill will go nowhere, even if the how many times votes on it and it passes, the senate won't take it up.
the president is not going to sign it. yet just one day after blackburn introduced her dead-end legislation, another republican congresswoman from tennessee, diane black introduced the exact same bill. blackburn is welcoming the move, telling "the huffington post" the fact that there are multiple members interested in this issue proves that planned parenthood is not going to be let off the hook. so once again, we are seeing the republican party waste time and taxpayer dollars by doing everything within its power to play to the extreme base of the party. the gop has no regard for the facts, no regard for public opinion, and no regard for the millions of women who rely on planned parenthood for health care. let's turn to cecile richards. she is the president of planned parenthood action fund. great to have you with us tonight. >> good to see you, ed. >> did you expect this early? >> well, i was somewhat shocked
that this would be again somehow at the top of the agenda by the republican leadership in the house, particularly after an election where mitt romney was part of his agenda was to overturn roe and was to get rid of planned parenthood. and we saw the biggest gender gap ever in a presidential election. what is important to me is if you look at republican rank and file voters, they desperately want the party to focus on economic issues, jobs, the things that are really on the minds of the american people, and not go after planned parenthood. >> planned parenthood has done some outreach. people don't view abortion as a black and white issue. many see shades of gray depending on the circumstances. why has the thinking on this issue evolved? >> well, i think really what we're seeing, and it's interesting, of course, because the 40th anniversary of roe is coming up, is that it's been very consistent in america, that the american people believe that abortion should be safe and should it be legal. they also support the preventative work that we do every day. we're the largest family planning provider in the country.
and they want women to have access to health care and birth control that helps them prevent unintended pregnancy in the first place. >> but they present the case and in interviews such as that you just saw or listened to, they distort the facts about the number of abortion services that are actually provided. this is all part of their operation to do this. how do you combat that? >> well, i think the most important thing, look, the american people believe this. this is why plant parenthood frankly has greater support now than we ever have. that is because the american people understand that by providing women access to education, health care services, screenings, and birth control, you actually prevent disease and you prevent unintended pregnancy. the irony of what these congresswomen have proposed is actually it would end access to birth control services for women across the country at planned parenthood and other facilities. that's exactly going in the wrong direction. and that's not where the american people are. >> is it picking on the poor? >> oh, i mean that's the irony, of course, is the women -- many
women who come to planned parenthood, it's the only health care provider that they will see. it's the only doctor visit they will have. it's not where they only get their birth control, but they get their cancer screening, they get their well women visit, and we hear from women all across the country deeply concerned from all parties. >> does this concern planned parenthood that they made this move so early before the next election cycle, to remind people that they're out there, they're not backing off? that certainly may help your organization. >> unfortunately, though, we would like to spend 100% of our time providing health care. unfortunately, when folks like this want to make women's health care a political issue, it means we have to spend more of our time just trying to protect women's access to basic health care in america. >> what do you say to lawmakers that do that? i mean, when you see them face-to-face, don't facts matter? >> well, you know, certainly to a number of lawmakers they do. i think that one of the things that has been of concern is moderate republicans who feel like they literally cannot stand up for their constituents because of who is in leadership now in the republican party. you know, historically, planned parenthood was started by
republicans across the country who believed that women should have access to family planning. a number of republicans i meet with are really dismayed that the leadership of the party has gone in such an extreme direction. >> sure. cecile richards, thank you. >> good to be here tonight. thanks a lot. still to come, drone strike fatalities are already climbing in the new year. filmmaker greenwald is here on the consequences of our supremacy in the air. it is good policy, and is it killing civilians? and michele bachmann is still on our intelligence committee. msnbc political analyst karen finney on the harsh reality ahead. stay with us. ♪ [ male announcer ] why do more emergency workers everywhere trust duracell...?? duralock power preserve. locks in power for up to 10 years in storage. now...guaranteed. duracell with duralock. trusted everywhere.
in place, and we need congressional help to do that to make sure that not only am i reined in, but any president is reined in terms of some of the decisions we're making. >> that was president obama back in october, addressing concerns over the nation's drone strike program, part of the larger war on terrorism. despite the kind of campaign rhetoric, the obama administration has taken few steps to rein in the program intended to target terrorists. the president has insisted that drones have been used only to prevent an operational plot against the united states. yet as the guardian reports, america's use of drones has soared during obama's time in office, with the white house authorizing attacks in at least four countries -- afghanistan, pakistan, yemen and somalia. it's estimated that the cia and the united states military have undertaken more than three hundred drone strikes and killed about 2500 people. it's clear we have yet to understand the full impact of the country's drone war. one former obama security adviser calls the use of drone counterproductive. use of drones counterproductive, that is. and retired general stanley mcchrystal who championed use of
drones in afghanistan is now advising caution. he says what scares me about the drone strikes is how they are perceived around the world. the resentment created by the use of american unmanned strikes is much greater than the average american anticipates and appreciates. they are hated on a visceral level, even by people who have never seen one or seen the everythings of one. yet earlier this week, the president nominated a man widely viewed as the administration's drone warrior to head the cia. obama counterterrorism adviser john brennan has made the legal case for targeted killings. some are now expressing concern over brennan in charge of the cia. and scott horton of harper's magazine reports "and the drones are just the beginning of it. the cia has its toe there, but we're going to see the cia probably take a very prominent role in robotic warfare." i'm joined tonight by greenwald, producer, director, and founder
of brave new films. he is also the director of an upcoming documentary film "drones exposed" and just completed a trip to the country of pakistan. mr. greenwald, good to have you with us tonight. will there be an issue at brennan's confirmation hearings? what is the likelihood of the senate forcing a debate on drone strikes? there has been very little conversation about it. >> yes. it's actually been very sad, ed, to see how there has almost been a bipartisan silence on this issue. we're hopeful that as we educate people, as people hear more about the drones, as they learn more about them, they will call their senators and they'll say it's essential to ask brennan the questions about this program. the notion that it's secrecy is completely ridiculous. and now is the time to know when are we targeting people, how are we targeting, when are the decisions being made.
remember, pakistan is a country that we're not at war at. we're sending drones in, and we're assassinating people who have no say in the matter, no jury, no lawyers, no protection. >> you were recently in pakistan. are we killing civilians? >> yes, there is no question about it, ed. i mean, i talk to people. there was a father who held up a picture of his mother, 65-year-old woman, who was in the fields, who was killed by drones. they there have been over 178 children killed by drones. just think about the number of parents and relatives of those children who are now going to seek revenge for the rest of their lives because of what has been done. >> there is no doubt that this program has been effective in killing terrorists. but of course, if we are killing civilians and you were on the ground in pakistan and you report that to us tonight and you confirm it, what's the
future of the program? i mean, are we creating more enemies? >> well, yes, definitely. and that's the concern that many people have articulated. there have been a series of studies pointing that out. and remember, this program was started to go after so-called high value terrorists targets. that is less than 2% of all the people that we are assassinating with the drones. that needs to be a debate. are we creating more people who are now going to go after us? i had an interview with khan who is running for president of pakistan. he said yeah, there are 100 people, maybe 150 in the tribal areas who are doing terrible things. but the united states has now created a million people who hate them because the drones are killing their family members, their tribal members. there was a 16-year-old boy, ed, who came to islamabad. he participated in a public event. two days later a cia drone killed him.
well, if he was so bad, why was he at a public event, and why didn't they send somebody to pick him up, put him in jail, and try him? >> this sounds so unlike the moral high ground that president obama talked about. and he, of course, in that interview that we just played a moment ago, brought up the legal aspects of this. what we're doing, in your opinion, is it legal? >> no, it is not. and there is a series of questions about the legality. for the film we're interviewing many legal scholars, and there is a variety of opinions about, you know, the specific ways that we're breaking humanitarian law and international law. and even the basic assumption was, as i said, high value targets who represent an imminent threat to the united states. i defy you to look at the people we're assassinating and say they are providing an imminent threat. >> there is no question in my opinion that the drone program is a huge asset because it keeps our soldiers out of harm's way.
it is the future of warfare. but if we know, if we know that we are taking out civilians, and if we don't think that that's not going to come back and bite us in the future and take away our moral high ground, we've got our heads stuck in the sand. there is no question about it. this program, mr. president, has to be reviewed thoroughly. and lawmakers need to wake up to this, because we lost 3,000 americans on 9/11 should not give us license to go around the country, around the world and have drone attacks killing innocent civilians that have nothing to do with threatening this country or terrorism in itself. and whereas the cloud of war can can't be perfect and it's hard to be accurate, we still are to maintain the moral high ground. and congress needs to take a real close look at this. greenwald, thanks for joining us tonight. i appreciate it. still to come, john boehner reappoints michele bachmann to the house intelligence committee. i'll ask karen finney what it means for our national security. can she be trusted? we're right back.
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and in the big finish tonight, republicans are outraged over chuck hagel's nomination for defense secretary. meanwhile, they have no problem with known conspiracy theorist michele bachmann, congresswoman from minnesota, retaining her seat on the house intelligence committee. remember, it was bachmann who led the witch-hunt against clinton's aide last year. in a wild conspiracy theory, bachmann claimed she had ties to a muslim extremist group. her campaign against muslims included absurd statements like this. >> it appears that there has been deep penetration in the halls of our united states government by the muslim brotherhood. the muslim brotherhood has been found to be an unindicted co-conspirator on terrorism cases, and yet it appears that there are individuals associated with the muslim brotherhood who have positions, very sensitive positions in our department of justice, our department of
homeland security, potentially even in the national intelligence agency. >> bachmann's muslim witch-hunt drew a wide range of criticism from both parties. her former presidential campaign chief ed rollins slammed the baseless attacks, saying as a member of congress, with a seat on the house intelligence committee, miss bachmann, you know better. shame on you, michele. now democrats furious. the liberal group people for the liberal way say members of the house intelligence committee are entrusted with classified information that affects the safety and security of all americans. that information should not be in the hands of anyone with such a disregard for honesty, misunderstanding of national security, and lack of respect for his or her fellow public servants. the group currently has a petition to remove bachmann from the intel committee. so far it has over 80,000 signatures. and if you want to sign that petition, visit pfa.org.
for more let's turn to karen finney, former communications director for the dnc. karen, good to have you with us tonight. i find it interesting that republicans are just absolutely outraged over chuck hagel. >> right. >> questioning his qualifications and positions, but they have no problem with michele bachmann on the intel committee after the stunt she pulled. make any sense of it? >> it wasn't just a stunt. remember what she did with huma at this time actually endanger herd safety to the point that huma had to have police protection. and remember at that time she had a new bobby. michele bachmann has already shown a willingness to abuse information in a very reckless way and endanger the life of an american citizen and her child. i think we should be very clear about what this woman is all about. now with regard to boehner, i think what it shows is how weak he really is after that vote last week, because he clearly is feeling that he's got to do
these kinds of things to apiece those right wing crazies in his caucus. there is no other reason for someone like this to be returned to the intelligence committee. >> i mean, that was quite an indictment that michele bachmann about made of hillary clinton's aide. >> yep. >> so how can she be trusted by any members of congress to withhold information which could be very sensitive to our security? why would they put michele bachmann in a position like that after what she did? >> well, she can't be trusted, and she has already proven that she can't be trusted. that's what the situation with huma proved. again, with regard to speaker boehner, it shows that he is weak and feels that he has to apiece the right wing. but also, you know what, ed? this is an embarrassment to the united states of america. remember, in other countries, when they see a person like a michele bachmann, who is a part of the american government, they don't necessarily always make